Chipotle Exec Faces Years In Jail On Drug Charges

By McCarton Ackerman 07/08/16

Chipotle executive Mark Crumpacker has been charged with buying cocaine on seven different occasions from a high-end delivery service. 

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Chipotle Exec Faces Years In Jail On Drug Charges

After a nationwide E.coli disaster last year, Chipotle is finding itself in more unflattering headlines after one of the company’s top executives was arrested on cocaine possession charges.

The New York Post reported that Mark Crumpacker, 53, surrendered to authorities on seven misdemeanor counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance on Tuesday. He is one of 18 defendants listed in the indictment, as one of the alleged cocaine buyers that used the high-end drug delivery service run by Kenny Hernandez, who is currently facing drug trafficking charges. Although Crumpacker is the most high-profile of the defendants, the list also included a Fox Business Network producer and a Merrill Lynch associate.

Prosecutor Patrick Doherty said that the Chipotle executive had numerous deliveries totaling about $3,000 sent to his luxury Union Square apartment. Doherty also revealed that Crumpacker had been intercepted on wiretap 13 times during the investigation.

Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Edward McLaughlin set bail at $10,000 on July 5, which was immediately posted. Although eyebrows were raised by Crumpacker being allowed to sit in the gallery while his bail was posted, McLaughlin insisted it was only because there wasn’t a holding cell attached to the courtroom.

“I sure don’t want anybody to think because somebody is the purported big shot [that] he’s being treated differently, because that would appall me,” said McLaughlin.

Chipotle spokesman Chris Arnold told the Post that Crumpacker “remains on a leave of absence from his job to focus on these personal matters.” If convicted on all charges, he faces up to seven years in jail.

Crumpacker isn’t the only fast food executive to be involved in a substance-related scandal. Last November, Taco Bell executive Benjamin Golden was fired after a video showed him to be allegedly intoxicated as he attacked an Uber driver in Costa Mesa, California. Driver Edward Caban posted the video on YouTube, which showed Golden falling over in his seat and unable to provide clear directions. He slapped the Uber driver and tried to attack him after being ordered out of the car, but Caban blasted him with pepper spray. Police arrested Golden and charged him with assault and public intoxication.

In response, Golden filed a $5 million lawsuit in January against the driver, arguing he illegally recorded the incident. He also claimed through his lawyer that despite the clear video footage, he had no recollection of the altercation.

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McCarton Ackerman is a freelance writer and editor living in Portland, Oregon. He has been a contributor for The Fix since October 2011, writing on a wide range of topics ranging from medical marijuana in Colorado to the world's sexiest drug smugglers. Follow him on Linkedin and Twitter.

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